Brave but ultimately fruitless end for Welwyn Garden City’s FA Cup campaign

PUBLISHED: 17:01 05 August 2017 | UPDATED: 09:59 07 August 2017

Welwyn Garden City's George Ironton battles for possession. Picture: KARYN HADDON

Welwyn Garden City's George Ironton battles for possession. Picture: KARYN HADDON

Archant

A brave second-half fightback was not enough as Welwyn Garden City crashed out of the FA Cup to North Greenford United with a 4-2 defeat.

Goals from Guy Ansah-Palmer and Daniel Vincent put the visitors to Herns Lane 2-0 ahead at half-time.

But City were much better in the second-half and deservedly pulled one back from George Ironton.

But strikes from James Simmonds and a second from Ansah-Palmer in the final 18 minutes made Jon Clements’ first for the club a mere consolation.

For the most part, the first half was a disjointed affair from WGC.

They struggled to retain possession for long enough periods and were behind after 11 minutes.

That said, they did have chances and most of them came courtesy of Josh Bronti.

He sent in a couple of searching crosses, one just inches away from being converting by the sliding Clements and Ben L’honore.

And a corner that sailed over the head of United’s keeper, James Harry, needed cleared off the line.

That was the last action the keeper saw, limping off moments later, and his replacement had to scramble a deflected Bronti cross off the line before a brilliant block by Sean Hillier denied Clements.

Any spark was snuffed off by United’s second, Vincent given too much space in the box after a pull back from the impressive Jordan Ellis.

With frustrations among the Citizens’ ranks visibly growing as the half closed, it was going to need one of Adam Fisher’s most inspirational half-time team talks if City were to pull this back around.

His response was to make two changes, Brandon Carney & Paul Marks coming on for Ash Kersey and Ben Long.

And after 10 much more pleasing minutes, they halved the advantage.

Ironton had the first chance but his shot was blocked.

However, it fell back to the midfielder and he curled home from inside the box.

It led to chance after chance for City.

First L’honore whipped a free-kick in which needed shovelled around the post before a cross from Clements was just in front of him, with the crowd baying for the SSML top-scorer to shoot.

Clements then was denied by the keeper coming out quick before L’honore sliced wide after bursting into the box.

But with 18 minutes to go the mountain was back to the same size it was at half-time when Simmonds pounced.

It knocked the wind out of City’s sails and United made the game safe through Ansah-Palmer, who was given too much time in the box.

Clements did grab a second for WGC though, firing across the keeper from the left-hand side.

It was a similiar position from where he squared to L’honore and had he done that earlier, it may have been a different story.

As it is, City’s hopes for a good cup run will now be centred on the FA Vase.

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